A friend has been asking me for a long time to share this recipe but, to be honest, I have been very reluctant to do that. It is one of the dishes from my "all-time favorite" list and one that I often serve to my guests. Most of the people who try this snack love it and ask for the recipe, but sharing it with them makes it impossible to serve it next time I have them over, since they learn how to do that and often use that recipe themselves.
My close and a very candid friend, who took home and reproduced some of my culinary secrets asked once: "Please do not make that dish for us anymore. I have been cooking it so often that we are tired of it." That is the only downside of having a culinary blog and sharing it with people we know. But, the big upside of it has been that it makes me feel great to be able to influence other people's culinary habits.
So I quietly hope I can interest with this recipe my anonymous readers in Brazil, Canada, China, France, Indonesia, and Russia but not so much in Washington DC. Let's hope they are all on vacation.
This simple snack is excellent served before dinner, or just as a party snack in itself when we meet people for drinks and finger food. Since summer creates many opportunities for meeting friends and family in a very informal atmosphere, it is a perfect time to let others enjoy this dish, its taste and simplicity.
When you look at it, it seems that you can recognize all the ingredients, but in fact there is a hidden one, which people cannot distinguish and which makes these petite sandwiches taste mysterious. You should guess.
Blue Cheese and Pear Baguette Sandwiches
1/2 baguette, a day-old baguette works the best,
1 soft pear,
1/2 pound of any hard blue cheese--it can be Bleu d'Auvergne or Stilton,
1/2 stick of butter,
1/2 cup of walnuts.
1. Preheat oven to 375F.
2. Cut the entire baguette in 1/4 inch thick slices and spread butter on them.
3. Peel off the pear, remove seeds and cut in quarters, then slice them across diagonally into thin slices.
4. Arrange the baguette on the baking tin buttered side up, and put a slice of pear on each piece.
5. Cover pear slices with slices of blue cheese and top with halves of walnuts.
6. Bake for that between 20-30 minutes, until cheese melts slightly, walnuts get roasted and the baguette turns gold.
7. Serve warm with wine.
This snack tastes wonderfully with red wine, but on a hot sunny evening it is goes particularly well with a glass of cold Vouvray or Sancerre.